Hey, Leader. Leadership is a heart thing. 

Oh boy, here Bob goes again with the “soft “stuff. I believe there is a prevailing myth that leaders are supposed to separate their emotions from a situation and be tough-minded and rational.

Here is some news for you, research over the past 20 years has shown the most influential leaders are the most open and caring—I guess “soft” wins gain. Here is the truth, folks, some of the most critical leadership competencies, such as integrity, honor, commitment, conviction, passion, and authenticity, are about the heart. Simply put, there is no faith and hope without the leader’s heart.

Our people expect their leaders to bring hope and hope for a better future. Author and educator Parker Palmer writes, “The power of authentic leadership is found not in the external arrangements, but in the human heart.” I hasten to use the word love; you might stop reading – getting softer now. The dictionary defines love as “a feeling of warm personal attachment, deep affection.”

From an organizational context, management consultant Rodney Ferris defines love as “a feeling of caring or deep respect for yourself and others.” From what I have learned and experienced, the best leaders do not place themselves at the center; they put others there. That is the type of leader I intend to be, and I encourage you to do the same.